Problems with looking “binary”

Problems with looking “binary”

Note: Sorry for being off the grid, I have been very busy with work and have barely time for myself these days. Decided to buckle down and write something to remove this writer’s block.

For a long time since I started my transition (medical and otherwise), I was presenting as a transgender man. Growing up in your standard Latinx family, gender was strictly enforced – I had to wear makeup, dresses, you name it.While not necessarily hating it, I didn’t feel comfortable and, if you ever met me during these years before my self-discovery, you could see it plain as day. When I started to go through this major identity overhaul, I flipped the switch and started doing things that men were expected to do. It all went well for a while until I found myself stuck with the same problem that I did when presenting as female. Did I really hate being female or was it something else?
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The Trouble With Pronouns

The Trouble With Pronouns

“Hi, my name is Gabriel and I use they/them pronouns.”

Sounds like an easy way to introduce yourself and your pronouns, doesn’t it? I thought it would be. That is, until I got a seasonal retail job.

Once I got that call to schedule an interview, I got excited. Excited at the prospect of finally having some sort of income coming in since I was let go from my previous one several months ago. The interview happened in two parts but, despite my low self-esteem, I managed to pass with flying colors and landed the job.

I was skipping my way home and tell my friends all about it, when my orientation would be and what my schedule would be like. It wasn’t until my friend asked me if I told them my pronouns during my interview that it hit me.They/them pronouns are hardly used among my own friends who are a part of the LGBTQ+ acronym, let alone coworkers. Despite the company’s strong support for LGBTQ+ folks, why was I afraid to let my coworkers and supervisors know? Continue reading “The Trouble With Pronouns”

2 Years on Testosterone

I’ve taken pictures of myself once a day for 2 years for this moment – to show what hope and what trans looks like. I hope you all are inspired by this video, I had a lot of fun putting it all together.

Don’t ever stop being your authentic selves.

What Transition Won’t (And Will Not) Do

What Transition Won’t (And Will Not) Do

Transition, as many transgender people know, can help alleviate (maybe even eradicate) your gender dysphoria and that, with time, you’ll be able to eventually move on with your life. Would have been true for me if gender dysphoria was the only thing holding me back from living the good life. And it definitely isn’t. In fact, despite not having top surgery yet, it’s the least of my problems now.

With every testosterone shot, I’ve been slowly realizing that I need help (and have needed it for quite some time now). It’s like testosterone pushing gender dysphoria to the back of my mind and replace it with stuff that should have been dealt with but have remained unresolved and continues to affect me negatively. I’ve put it off for a while thinking that it’s nothing but I realized it’s something transition and hormones can’t fix. Unemployed and depressed at 24 with no general direction, I needed to seek professional help. I can’t keep putting bandages on these emotional scars and expect something to happen to get me out of this hole.
Continue reading “What Transition Won’t (And Will Not) Do”

Second Name Change

Second Name Change

Random fact: I’m an immigrant from La Paz, Bolivia.

Name change is finally legal, everyone! After all this trouble, I’m not as ecstatic as I thought I would be. I updated my transition timeline page to reflect this and show where I am now in my personal transition. I had a bunch of trouble getting this done since I filed this in November 2015 – I kept running into one obstacle after another what with the newspaper having to republish the name change again since they put down the wrong index number and having to wait an extra 2 weeks for “nunc pro tunc” to get my certified copies because the name change was considered later (hence invalid) and had to be overturned by the judge.

Now time to prepare for finding work and dare I say…top surgery planning?  😉

The Balancing Act of Gender

The Balancing Act of Gender

I didn’t sign no contact that states that I wanted to do everything that society labels as “appropriate” for my gender – or even what they assume my gender is.

After my uncle staged a family intervention  when I reached the 6 months on testosterone mark, my family flipped a switch and started respecting who I was. But it all came at a price: now it feels like my perceived gender is now a mask I need to wear to make them and other people comfortable. I was expected to do the heavy lifting, know the answers to people’s questions, hold back my feelings, not be scared of insects and get a haircut when my hair gets longer than 2 inches.

All this gender policing, aimed to get me to adjust to navigating the world as a man, drove me to be more fed up about the gender binary and just do away with it.
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Sorry everyone

Sorry everyone

Hey, I’m sorry if I haven’t written anything in a while. Outside of making YouTube videos on my channel every Wednesday and Saturday, depression has been seriously slowing me down and I’ve been scrambling to find a better therapist that is completely covered under my insurance and isn’t transphobic. Throw in being unemployed and it’s just a nasty vicious cycle of depression and negativity that’s hard to break. I’m 24 years old and my life isn’t really going anywhere.

I’ll be publishing a post weekly as I used to, I need to start being more productive than I’ve currently have been.

Coming Out as Non-Binary

Coming Out as Non-Binary

Up until recently, I identified strictly as a binary transgender man.

When I first started out, my knowledge was relatively limited and I thought that when you transition, you go all the way to other end of the gender binary. Whatever testosterone brought, I thought I had to just embrace it whether or not I liked them or not. I had to be subjected to whatever was expected of me in my new gender and magically rise up to the occasion.

Cut my hair short? Got it.
Do the heavy lifting? Okay!
Get used to being called a bro? I guess…

Despite being comfortable presenting as masculine, I wouldn’t go out on a limb and call myself a man. There have been incidents where, at the time, I would cringe at people calling me “sir”, “dude” and “bro” and never really know why. For a while, I thought it was just a phase of getting used to passing as male after getting misgendered left and right up until my voice dropped.

Figured it would pass eventually…except it didn’t.
Continue reading “Coming Out as Non-Binary”

Finding Hope in Unexpected Places

Finding Hope in Unexpected Places

Thinking back to my early days in transition, all I had to look forward to was shot day.

Despite my fear of needles, getting my T shot was the sole highlight of my week because it meant that I was getting closer to the person I wanted everyone to see. With the way everyone described their testosterone experience, I thought changes would happen quickly. Which is what I had hoped for since I was not physically blessed with masculine features.

As with all things, unfortunately, second puberty did not happen overnight. It didn’t help that I was deathly afraid of parents finding out that I was on hormones as well so I haven’t had the courage to go to the barber yet. During this time, I didn’t have any friends to lean on or to reaffirm that I was a man whether or not I physically looked like one. Back then, I didn’t really expect people to just respect my gender identity walking around with long hair and a voice that betrayed me. Everywhere I went, I would get referred to as she/her and called by my birth name. Feeling hopeless in my situation, I couldn’t do anything else other than endure it and hope testosterone will do its work.
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Navigating Gender Roles and Privilege

Navigating Gender Roles and Privilege

From the moment my voice dropped, I thought it would be smooth sailing from here on out. While no one questions my gender or has any trouble seeing me as male at around 3 months on T, I figured that I can just navigate the world without worrying about transphobia or not let complete strangers find out I was transgender.

I couldn’t have been more wrong, however.

It was tough adjusting to my new new role as a man. Aside from clothing choices and fashion, there were so many unspoken expectations (is this what they call the bro code?) that were thrust upon me all of a sudden. As a guy, I was expected to like sports, physical fitness, winning at everything and fixing stuff. It was as if they assumed that testosterone would automatically increase my knowledge in all of those areas! I can’t tell you how many times my father would ask me if I had seen the recent games of the U.S World Open over dinner despite telling him repeatedly that, aside from FIFA World Cup, I still have no interest in sports.
Continue reading “Navigating Gender Roles and Privilege”